There are common stimuli that can drastically cause anxiety in a cats behavior:
- Arrival of a stranger
- Intrusion into their personal space
- Sudden movements
- Loud noises
- Novel objects
- Novel smells
- Loss of control over the environment
- The arrival of other cats
This was definitely the case with Tessa. Her harsh reaction to virtually all of these stimuli (except for other cats)made the case very clear. Tessa was indeed having a very hard time adjusting to the drastic changes in her life's routine. So what do you do in cases like this?Initially, we tried to desensitise her to the strangers, having them spend more and more time with her , especially during feedings. With her hesistance to people coming and going becoming an issue, the visitors who stayed longest seemed to be her favorite. Tessa showed us her discomfort by rolling around on the floor, showing her belly and purring like a motor. Progress!!!!
The next step was to move Tessa into an environment with consistancy. We wanted to immerse her in a room where people would stay longer than just few minutes to half an hour and be able to work with her socialization on a continuous basis, making every meal count. The next obvious place to live would be our office!
If you are interested in keeping up with Tessa's progress or would like to take her home to live with you, feel free to email The Cat Behavior Program at firstname.lastname@example.org